Here is my Rhine Channel weekly update for September 26 – 30.
· Please see the attached figure that shows the progress to date.
· You won’t notice too much of a difference with the red dredging area this week compared to last. This is because the “easy” production dredging in the center of the channel is complete, leaving the more difficult dredging in between the slips to continue at a much slower pace. Dutra is making progress though, and is still way ahead of schedule.
· The pile driving operations are still going smoothly, and Dutra is completely done driving pile on the peninsula side of the channel. A milestone indeed! There is still some residual dock work around the piles to be completed, and they’ll resume those tasks next week.
· We had to re-sample the Phase II area, so we’re still waiting for those results. There is a possibility that Dutra may need to go back and touch up a few areas, but we won’t know for sure until the first part of next week. This is why we haven’t allowed the remaining Phase II boats to return to their slips just yet. It’ll be very soon though.
· There will be no dredging or pile driving work this weekend.
· This week was very productive for the Phase III docks on the peninsula side of the channel. Dutra started, and finished, dredging those docks on Tuesday, and the piles were driven on Wednesday and Thursday. We’ve sampled that side of the channel but we’re still waiting for results. I’m optimistic, but we’ll know more early next week. In any event, those Phase III docks will have been impacted the least by a huge margin – a direct benefit of Dutra’s efficiency earlier in the project.
· The Phase III docks along the Lido Peninsula side of the channel are more challenging because of the tight quarters and the multitude of smaller boats that have to be relocated. I am extremely grateful for the assistance and cooperation from the folks at Bellport and Newport Harbor Shipyard, specifically Jesse Salem and Bruce Inlow. They’ve done a great job of orchestrating the giant “boat shuffle.”
· Since most of the production dredging is complete, the larger “Weeks” disposal scow will be leaving us this weekend, as well as the larger Brusco tug. This will leave us with the two smaller scows, with a smaller tug coming down to handle the rest of the project.
· Interesting fact No. 9: The “Weeks” disposal scow actually splits itself apart, right down the middle, when it drops its load at the Port of Long Beach. (Sorry, no pictures – it’s usually at the POLB late at night.) The two other smaller scows have a series of trap doors that open up on the bottom to drop their load. (See attached picture – notice the 4 internal compartments that equalize the load. Also, the grate on top (known as a “grizzly”) catches the random debris so it doesn’t get dumped at the POLB.)
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